You might recall that a few months ago, I documented Moms Demand Action lobby Florida legislators for common sense gun laws. You can see that post here if you missed it. This weekend, the NRA held their national convention in Atlanta, GA, and for the first time since Reagan, our President spoke at their event. Well, Moms were prepared. Moms Demand Action held a counter rally in Woodruff Park, Atlanta yesterday, and I had the honor and pleasure of documenting it. Speakers included Moms Demand Action founder Shannon Watts, Moms Demand Action National Spokeswoman Lucy McBath, Atlanta Women’s March Organizer Janel Green, Georgia State Senators Elena Parent and Vincent Fort, Reverend Raphael G. Warnock, PhD, and Representative John Lewis. It was a truly positive and inspiring event.
I’ll let the images speak for themselves, but I did want to share a favorite quote from Representative John Lewis that I know will stay with me. Before we participated in the Women’s March, I purchased a children’s book called “The Youngest Marcher” by Cynthia Levinson. Our family loves books, and I wanted some positive examples of protests to share with my children to help them understand what we were doing and why. This particular story is about a little girl named Audrey who helps Dr. King with the desegregation movement by volunteering to protest and consequently go to jail. Audrey said the adults were too afraid — they didn’t want to lose their jobs or their apartments, so the children volunteered. Dr. King calls for them to “fill the jails”, and that’s exactly what they do. It’s an absolutely wonderful story — Audrey is so brave and strong. But you guys, I literally cry EVERY time I read this book to my kids. Well, if you are familiar with Lewis and his key role in desegregation and the Civil Rights Movement, then you may not be surprised by his speech. He spoke about resistance and doing what is necessary to stand up for what you believe in, including going to jail (which he has done many times for this reason). His advice is to “Get in trouble — good trouble! Get in the way!” It made me think of Audrey and my two children at home. It reminded me why I was there. I was so proud to tell my boys that I met a friend of Dr. Martin Luther King’s today.